We at the West Vancouver Community Foundation believe that Vital Signs will be the spark that starts a conversation, kindles it, and ultimately helps to create an even more vibrant West Vancouver. We hope that this Report helps identify issues and opportunities that lead to thoughtful and carefully crafted responses. We anticipate that the facts and opinions reported here will become a baseline for compassion in the future. Are we getting better as a community? Are the trends going our way?
Our mission is to leverage the generosity, talent and commitement of our residents to build a stronger, more caring and inclusive community. Vital Signs will get us thinking more about how we do that.
-Nancy Farran, Chair
WHAT IS VITAL SIGNS?
West Vancouver's Vital Signs is a community indicators initiative that uses a wide range of national data and local research to present a comprehensive, reader-friendly look at how our community is faring in key areas, such as health, safety, housing, environment and diversity. This community knowledge will increase awareness of important local issues and opportunities, and help the Foundation decide where to focus attention and resources to have the greatest impact.
West Vancouver's Vital Signs is part of a Community Foundations of Canada program that has involved over 65 community foundations in Canada and around the world. Combining quality of life indicators with explanations, comparisons and examples, Vital Signs creates a snapshot of the community and the people who live there, providing a tool for discussion, planning and action.
WHAT DOES IT MEASURE?
West Vancouver's Vital Signs uses ten themes to examine how well residents' needs are being met, from the most basic needs-sustenance, shelter, health, safety-to those that give quality to life, such as opportunities to play, learn and create. These themes are:
• Arts & Culture
• Diversity & Inclusivity
• Health & Wellness
• Volunteerism and Civic Engagement
HOW DOES IT WORK?
Vital Signs engages a broad range of community members and organizations who contribute their knowledge, skills and expertise to guide themes, indicator selection, and reasearch, and to provide examples and stories to illustrate the data. Indicators are selected and prioritized based on: perceived public interest; potential to inspire and engage individuals, organizations, or communities to take action; availability of reasonably current local data; and understanding and measurability.
HOW IS IT USED?
The Vital Signs Report is an important guide and discussion tool for the community. It provides clarity around demographics, and community assets and issues, and is a key resource for many different groups working for the betterment of our community.
For more information about West Vancouver Community Foundation's Vital Signs 2016, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To view Vital Signs reports from other Canadian communities, please visit: Vital Signs Canada
VITAL SIGNS 2017
Publishing the 2016 Vital Signs Report was just the beginning. It is how it is used that creates value for the Foundation and for the community. Over the next few years, the Foundation will implement a comprehensive Vital Signs strategy that will inform, integrate and guide much of our activity, and:
- increase the effectiveness of our granting
- better inform and engage existing and potential donors on issues and opportunities in the community
- assist in making connections among individuals and groups to address those issues
- help community agencies to build their organizational effectiveness, capacity for acheiving results, and their sustainability.
One of our first takes is to 'go deeper', to learn more about some of the problems identified in the Report, such as poverty, isolation, and seniors' health and safety. Although such issues appear in the Report under different themes, most are cross-cutting and inter-related, and could be categorized in several different ways. The commonality, however, is vulnerability. And so we want to know more about what vulnerability looks like in West Vancouver; who is vulnerable and why, and what strategies are effective in addressing vulnerability and fostering resilience-for residents and for our community.
Thank you to our generous Vital Signs Partners